Paper or plastic? What would you choose?


Paper, Plastic, Reusable bag or something else?

  1. Paper

    7 vote(s)
  2. Plastic

    7 vote(s)
  3. others

    4 vote(s)
By abe10tiger · 23 replies
Jan 6, 2014
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  1. Hey all!

    I am currently working on an investigatory project regarding usage of Paper or Plastic as shopping bags and I need your opinions. =) (Grocery shopping, mall shopping etc.) I need different opinions on what you would rather use when out grocery/mall shopping; Paper, Plastic or a reusable bag?

    1. Why use .....(what ever choice you made)
    2. Does the area/country you live in affect your choice?
    3. Does your country/state/town/village implement any laws regarding usage of plastic or paper as shopping/grocery bags?
    4. What would you prefer to use? Why?

    And yes, it's been a long time since I posted. XDD

    Thanks for the help! :DD
    cliffordcooley and LookinAround like this.
  2. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Grand Inquisitor Posts: 4,736   +3,757

    1. Works in the rain, easier to handle and pack (paper is bulkier).
    2. No.
    3. Not that I am aware of.
    4. Plastic. See No. 1.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  3. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Hi abe!

    You get a +Like just cause it's nice to see ya again :)

    1. Plastic. Easier to carry more groceries without worrying about the bag breaking
    2. No
    3. No
    4. Also see #1

    Though I do use a re-usable bag sometimes when just picking up a couple of items at the store. (Help me feel less guillty :p )
    cliffordcooley and abe10tiger like this.
  4. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 789   +16

    Haha thanks! It's good to be back. School is really making me super busy nowadays but I'll do my best to check in here every now and then. :)

    Keep 'em coming guys! Thanks again in advance! :)
  5. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 789   +16

    I'll keep this Poll open until late January because February will be the first defense. I really need your help guys.

  6. Ranger12

    Ranger12 TS Evangelist Posts: 621   +122

    1. Works in the rain, easier to handle and pack (paper is bulkier).
    2. No.
    3. Not that I am aware of.
    4. Plastic. See No. 1.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  7. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,713   +3,691

    Same as the three votes above for me.
  8. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    1. Paper - plastic generally (although it doesn't always) comes from petroleum sources. That isn't 'renewable' in the sense that trees/paper are.
    2. I don't think so. There is a lot of forest here and no oil production.....
    3. I am not sure, but I know that every place I shop at uses plastic. A few of those places also have recycling bins for plastic bags.
    4. Some places (Trader Joes maybe?) have paper bags with handles. That is awesome. I'm sure they are quite a bit more expensive for the store to purchase though. So I agree with comments above that plastic is easier to carry several bags, but putting handles on paper ones addresses that issue.
    Raoul Duke likes this.
  9. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 789   +16

    Thanks for the feedback, guys! Really appreciated. :)
  10. misor

    misor TS Evangelist Posts: 1,283   +242

    1. plastic
    2. yes
    3. yes
    4. plastic

    I recycle/reuse plastic bags.
    actually, in a nearby city where I buy most of my grocery items, there is a local ordinance regulating the use of plastic bags.
    a customer is charged 1 Philippine peso for every plastic bag.

    at least in my point of view, the funny thing is the encouraged use of paper bag (which is manufactured from harvested trees).

    anyday, anytime, I prefer clogged waterways due to improperly disposed plastic products over a polluted breathing air because not enough trees are present to produce clean air.
    cliffordcooley and learninmypc like this.
  11. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 789   +16

    Hey, so you're from the Philippines too? :))
    misor likes this.
  12. 1. Use plastic, paper has been phased out where I live. Very thin so have to double, but are returnable for recycling which I do. So choice is plastic or bring your own (I always forget)
    2 .No because of 1.
    3. I don't know, but I think retailers find plastic less expensive. In retail, not grocery, look nice, put their graphic on the bag. They are fancier bags than grocery.
    4. I prefer to use ones you can buy made of heavy fabric with handle. Can hold heavy loads, reuse over and over and over. No bags to take back to recycle. Better uses for petroleum products than plastic bags such as starting materials for so many things like pharmaceuticals, chemicals, etc, etc. Or you can use a briefcase type bag, sm. backpack or whatever you have (even pockets for really small items) than a bag. Just keep receipt One grocery chain does charge per bag as does one retail hardware store
  13. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 789   +16

    I would like to thank you guys for the time in replying! Your help is much appreciated! :))
  14. Benny26

    Benny26 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,535   +51

    Paper bags seem to be quite rare in the UK as far as I've seen, but even so I'd still say plastic beats them, so...

    1. Plastic - Because they handle being wet, are stronger, and they don't give me that strange cringe feeling when handling them (I have a thing with rubbing paper between my fingers)

    2. Nope.

    3. Not sure, but I do know they're bringing in the minimum pricing thing on plastic bags in the future (like 5p a bag or something)

    4. explained in point 1.
  15. abecedarian

    abecedarian TS Enthusiast Posts: 40

    One thing that seems to be constantly overlooked is that plastic bags are more likely to be re-used. Especially for trash. But I use them to carry food. Or shoes. I bring them when I travel. The people making these managerial decisions don't that that into account. If people don't get plastic bags with their groceries, they'll be more likely to have to go out and buy more for trash - yet again putting a new burden on the consumer.
    davislane1 likes this.
  16. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    @abecedarian maybe its because I live by myself and am a guy, but I have a regular 11 (or is it 13?) gallon trash can. I do use plastic sacks for the trash can in my bathroom, but I buy 15+ bags of groceries in the time it takes me to fill up the little bathroom sized trash can lined with a plastic sack.

    I do use the plastic grocery sacks for some other things on occasion, but not anywhere near the rate I purchase groceries or other goods that go in them at the store.

    Once I get one sack completely stuffed with other sacks, I then take it to the recycling center.
  17. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,669   +413

    Plastic, easier to carry. Although I do have a wheeled cart for HUGE shopping days.
    No on #2,
    No on #3,
    #4 I've never trusted the handles on paper sacks. Get wet/damp,they fall apart/off.
  18. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    Thats funny @learninmypc , I have had stuff fall out of the plastic sack literally as soon as I picked it up off the counter, because the bag 'ripped'. Poor quality control making the seams I guess.

    You'd have to get a paper bag pretty wet before its handles are going to rip, certainly not something most people will encounter taking sacks from their car to their door in the rain. Maybe if you have to walk home from the store in a monsoon...
  19. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,669   +413

    Clarification, I've had both types of bags break on me. I prefer plastic because I re-use them as garbage bags.
    I just prefer the plastic ones now. :)
  20. Row1

    Row1 TS Guru Posts: 343   +13

    1 - I use the paper of the paper bags. I wrap things for shipping, use it for broken glass, and as a drop cloth or counter protector for kids' art. I get paper, and my wife gets plastic - we use plastic for trash, and I might wrap shipping items in plastic bags before wrapping with paper.
    2 no
    3 no
    4 - I keep buying re-usable, and trying to get in the habit, but have not established that habit yet.
  21. misor

    misor TS Evangelist Posts: 1,283   +242

    yes! Southern Philippines (but I'm not saying exactly where). sorry for the delayed response as I have not subscribed to this thread.

    funny thing in the Philippines. the city where I do most of my grocery shopping has an existing ordinance regulating the use of plastic bags. one peso charge for every plastic bag or the buyer can his own reusable 'eco bag'.
    as always, the dvd pirates on the sidewalks still use plastic bags to wrap the 'dvd goods'. I wonder if the local government would enforce the 'plastic use regulation' or look the other way as always. :)
  22. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 789   +16

    It's nice to see a fellow Filipino here! Been kinda lonely the day I started here, lol! Well anyway, thanks for your reply, really appreciate it. :)

    And to everyone, thanks!
    misor likes this.
  23. abecedarian

    abecedarian TS Enthusiast Posts: 40

    I think stores should provide both. Generally I prefer plastic, which particularly makes sense if you're walking. Paper makes sense if you're driving. In New York here, there's a movement to penalize plastic with an extra charge, which I think is stupid. There a lot of things that we need plastic for, and can re-use it for.
    abe10tiger likes this.
  24. Simon723

    Simon723 Banned

    I would like to go for the clothing bags as they can be used to bring the daily commodities and they won't be torn easily and commodities won't come out as if it gets wet .
    abe10tiger likes this.

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